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Edinburgh: T. & A. CONSTABLE, Printers to His Majesty 


SEVERAL years ago, when occupied in investi- 
gating the sources of our traditional songs and 
ballads, I asked a kind and generous corre- 
spondent, the late Professor Francis James 
Child, of Harvard University, if he could 
afford me any information with regard to the 
earliest forms in which the old English nursery 
rhymes crossed the Atlantic. Professor Child, 
in a letter dated 25th February 1886, wrote 
to me : ' A collection of nursery songs was 
made in Boston as early as 1719: Bongs for 
the Nursery, or Mother Goose's Melodies for 
Children. A copy was said to have been dis- 
covered in an old antiquarian library not very 
long ago, but afterwards could not be found. 
I meant to reprint this copy it was somewhat 
imperfect for the good of the world. Mother 
Goose's Melodies continues to be printed, but 
no one thinking fidelity of the least conse- 
quence, books bearing that title are arbitrarily 
b v 


altered, and filled out from Halliwell. The 
original collection seems to have been a very 
small affair, and the smaller the reprints the 
more chance of genuineness. I have ordered 
one which used to be sold in Boston, and will 
send it as soon as it comes to hand.' 

Professor Child was presumably unable to 
procure this little book, as I never received 
it, nor, in the press of work attending the 
preparation of his monumental collection of 
The English and Scottish Popular Ballads, was 
he able to carry out the task of giving to the 
world his contemplated treatise on the litera- 
ture of the nursery. In this particular his 
mantle fell upon the late Mr. William H. 
Whitmore of Boston, the eminent antiquary 
and genealogist. Mr. Whitmore devoted him- 
self assiduously to the study of the subject, 
and after some years of diligent inquiry, 
during which he was successful in acquiring 
two early American copies of Mother Goose's 
Melody, he published a pamphlet in 1889 at 
Albany, New York, which in 1892 he ampli- 
fied into a very valuable work, entitled The 


Original Mother Goose's Melody, as issued by 
John Newbery, London, circa 1760 ; Isaiah 
Thomas, Worcester, circa 1785 ; Monroe & 
Francis, Boston, circa 1825. This book con- 
tained an interesting introduction by Mr. 
Whitmore, in which he traced the history of 
the little collection with a painstaking minute- 
ness that left few gleanings for a successor 
to pick up, together with a facsimile of the 
earliest known American edition, and a reprint 
of the New York (1795) edition of Perrault's 
Tales of "Passed Times. Of the two copies of 
the little book in the possession of Mr. Whit- 
more, both of which were printed by Isaiah 
Thomas of Worcester, Massachusetts, the 
earlier, which Mr. Whitmore considered on 
good grounds was dated not later than 1785, 
had unfortunately lost its title-page, while 
the other, which was stated to be the third 
Worcester edition, and was printed in 1799, 
was deficient in several leaves. 1 

1 Notwithstanding these defects, at the auction sale of 
Mr. Whitmore's books in November 1902, the first 
copy realised as much as $45, and the second $30. 


Mr. Whitmore's investigations brought to 
light no evidence whatever of the existence 
of the supposed edition of 1719. The story 
seems to have originated in a misunderstanding. 
A literary man named Crowninshield, who 
died in 1859, apparently conceived a vague 
idea that he had seen this volume in the 
Library of the American Antiquarian Society 
the 'old antiquarian library' of Professor 
Child. Amongst his acquaintances, he came 
across a gentleman of the name of Eliot, who 
was a great-grandson of Thomas Fleet, a well- 
known Boston printer, who carried on business 
between 1712 and 1758, and from whose press 
the little volume was supposed to have issued. 
Fleet was the son-in-law of a certain Mrs. 
Elizabeth Goose, and this fact seems to have 
established a tradition in the family that this 
lady was the veritable * Mother Goose ' of the 
Melodies. Mr. Crowninshield's presumed 
discovery lent weight to this legend, and the 
story having been published by Mr. Eliot in 
The Boston Transcript for January 14, 1860, 
it rapidly got into currency, and, crossing the 


Atlantic, found its way into Notes and Queries 
(3rd Ser. ix. 265). In The Athenaum for 
February 26, 1887, Mr. Andrew Lang drew 
attention to the fact that some one had adver- 
tised for a copy of the book, and asked any 
reader of that journal who possessed any 
knowledge of Mother Goose, or her Songs 
for the Nursery, to impart his lore. As no 
information was obtainable, it was assumed 
that the original work in the Library of the 
Antiquarian Society had been lost, or mislaid, 
or possibly destroyed. The fact, however, 
remains that the library was carefully searched, 
and that no copy of any such edition was 
found. Nothing has since been heard of it, 
and the only safe conclusion is that it never 
existed, except in the imagination of the sup- 
posed discoverer. 

For the authentic history of the genuine 
Mother Goose's Melody y we have but few 
materials. The only fact that Mr. Charles 
Welsh, in his charming book, A Bookseller of 
the Last Century, was able to ascertain regard- 
ing it, was that it was entered by Thomas 


Carnan, the stepson and one of the successors 
of John Newbery, at Stationers' Hall on 
December 28, 1780. But Mr. Welsh in- 
formed Mr. Whitmore that he thought it 
probable that 1780, the date of the copyright, 
was not necessarily that of the first issue of 
the book, but rather that the copyright was 
taken out in connection with the winding-up 
of the co-partnership on Francis Newbery's 
death. Judging from the style of the book, it 
seems likely that it was first * produced by 
John' Newbery about 1765. 

The book being merely a collection of 
nursery rhymes, to which a selection of 
Shakespeare's lyrics was added, the question 
of authorship hardly arises, but it would be 
interesting if the identity of the writer of the 
preface and the footnotes could be established. 
Mr. Welsh and Mr. Whitmore are of opinion 
that in these additions to the rhymes the hand 
of Goldsmith may be traced. There is no 
doubt that between 1762 and 1768 he was 
constantly employed in hack-work for John 
Newbery, in addition to the more important 


works for which Newbery acted as publisher. 
Mr. Whitmore points out that Goldsmith 
was fond of children, and was familiar with 
nursery rhymes and games. Forster, in his 
Life of Goldsmith, quotes a letter of Miss 
Hawkins, in which she says : ' I little thought 
what I should have to boast, when Goldsmith 
taught me to play Jack and Jill, by two bits 
of paper on his fingers/ And a more curious 
piece of evidence is noted by Mr. Whitmore. 
On January 29, 1768, Goldsmith's play of 
The Good Natured Man was produced. The 
reception it met with was discouraging, and 
Goldsmith had some trouble to conceal his 
disappointment. He had supper with some 
of his set, and Johnson told Mrs. Thrale that 
to impress his friends still more forcibly with 
an idea of his magnanimity, he even sung his 
favourite song, which he never consented to 
sing but on special occasions, about An Old 
Woman tossed in a Blanket seventeen times as 
high as the Moon, and was altogether very noisy 
and loud. Now, as Mr. Whitmore points 
out, the reader will find this identical * favourite 


song ' at page vii of the preface to Mother 
Goose's Melody, dragged in without any excuse, 
but evidently because it was familiar to the 
writer. It is difficult not to concede some 
force to this coincidence. 

The title of the little song-book was doubt- 
less borrowed from the more familiar Mother 
Goose's Tales. The date of Newbery's first 
edition of these Tales is unknown, but Mr. 
Charles Welsh shows that the seventh edition 
was printed May 16, 1777, and that between 
this date and March 1779, Carnan and New- 
bery took 1700 out of the 3000 copies printed 
by Collins of Salisbury. The eighth edition 
was issued September 4, 1780. The title of 
the book is merely a translation of Perrault's 
Contes de ma Mere fOye. Of the origin of 
this fantastic name nothing can be said with 
certainty, but in The Athenteum for March 12, 
1887, the Countess Martinengo-Cesaresco 
pointed out the connection between the Contes 
de ma Commere fOye and other stories with 
animal eponymi, such as Contes de Teati 
d'Asnon and Contes de la Cicogne, of which all 


traces except the names seem to be lost. In 
Melusine for April 1887 (col. 369), there is 
an interesting extract from Noel du Fail's 
Propos Rustiques, which describes how Robin 
Chevet, an old Breton farmer, used to enter- 
tain his family after supper with old-world 
tales : 

'Et ainsi occupes a diverses besognes, le 
bonhomme Robin, apres avoir impose silence, 
commen9oit un beau conte du temps que les 
bestes parloient : comme le renard desroboit 
le poisson aux poissoniers ; comme il fit battre 
le loup aux lavandieres, lorsqu'il apprenoit a 
pescher, comme le chien et le chat alloient 
bien loin ; de la corneille qui en chantant 
perdit son fromage, de Melusine, du loup 
garou, de cuir d' Annette ; des fes, et que 
souventes fois parloit a elles, familierement 
mesme, la vespree, passant par le chemin 
creux, et qu'il les voyoit danser au branle 
pres la fontaine de Cormier au son d'une belle 
veze (cornemuse), couverte de cuir rouge, ce 
luy estoit avis, car il avoit la vue courte/ 


The contributor of Melusine, to whom we 
are indebted for this extract, observed that in 
some editions of *Propos Rustiques three tales 
are added to the repertory of Robin Chevet, 
one of which is 4 le conte de la cicogne.' 
Looking to the general character of worthy 
Robin's stories, it seems possible that 'contes 
de loups ' and ' contes de la cicogne ' were only 
popular appellations for the fables of a still 
earlier raconteur, the ubiquitous JEsop. How- 
ever this may be, it is clear that the names of 
animals were associated with collections of 
tales from an early period, and Mr. Lang 
points out in his edition of Perrault (Oxford, 
1888), p. xxiv, that ' Mother Goose' occurs in 
Loret's La Muse Historique (lettre v., 1 1 Juin, 

* Mais le cher motif de leur joye, 
Comme un conte de la Mere Oye, 
Se trouvant fabuleux et faux, 
Us deviendront tous bien penauts.' 

This anticipates the date of the first collected 
edition of Perrault's Tales (1697) by nearly 
fifty years. 


Mother Goose and her Tales were not long 
in crossing the Channel. The earliest editions 
of the English translation have long passed into 
limbo. Mr. Austin Dobson informed Mr. 
Lang that 'an English version, translated by 
Mr. Samber, printed for J. Pote, was adver- 
tised in The Monthly Chronicle, March 1729' 
(Perrault's Tales, p. xxxiv). This was pro- 
bably the first edition, but no copies are 
known to exist. Nor have I ever met with a 
copy of the following edition, the full title of 
which I give from a contemporary bookseller's 

' Mother Goose's Stories of Past Times, 
writ purposely for the Innocent Entertainment 
of Children, and yet are so contrived by the 
Author, that not only Children, but those 
of Maturity have found in them uncommon 
Pleasure and Delight : As an Instance of 
which, the famous Perault [j/V] was so taken 
with them that he made the Morals to them 
himself, knowing they tended to the In- 
couragement of Virtue, and the Depression of 


Vice; the former of which is ever rewarded 
in them, and the latter ever punished. 

' N.'B. This Book has met with such 
uncommon Encouragement in the French 
Tongue, that Ten Thousand could hardly 
satisfy the Call there has been for them ; nor 
has the English Bookseller Reason to com- 
plain, the Second Edition being almost sold. 
It is likewise to be had in French and English, 
at 2s. 6d., and in English only for is. 6d., 
adorned with Cuts.' 

The translation of Robert Samber seems 
to have long retained its popularity, as an 
edition, called the seventh, was printed by 
J. Rivington, New York, in 1795. Like its 
predecessors, it contained the English and 
French versions on opposite pages. I have 
little doubt that the ' Morals ' which Perrault 
tagged on to his stories gave the idea to the 
compiler of Mother Goose s Melody of append- 
ing the footnotes to the rhymes, in some of 
which one is inclined to see some trace of the 


wise and kindly humour which studs the 
pages of the immortal Vicar. 

When Mr. Whitmore published his book 
in 1892, he noted that the English editions 
of Mother Goose's Melody had practically dis- 
appeared, not even Mr. Welsh, the historian 
of the house in St. Paul's Churchyard, having 
been able to see an example of Newbery's 
print. The rarity of early children's books 
exceeds that of a Coverdale Bible or a first 
folio Shakespeare. A short time ago, however, 
Mr. Bertram Dobell, an assiduous and culti- 
vated literary miner, was fortunate enough to 
disinter the copy from which the following 
facsimile has been made. It is in beautiful 
condition, in the original Dutch paper wrappers, 
and as fresh as when it left the dealer's counter, 
forming in this respect a contrast to the 
American exemplars which fetched high prices 
at Mr.Whitmore's sale. No edition is specified 
on the title-page, but it may be presumed that 
many had been issued before 1791, not one of 
which, so far as our present knowledge extends, 
has survived. Francis Power, the publisher, 


was a son of Mr. Michael Power, a Spanish 
merchant, who in 1766 married Mary, the 
eldest child and only daughter of John 
Newbery. Under her father's will, Mary 
Power became entitled to a fourth share in his 
publications, together with other contingent 
advantages. Very few books bear the name 
of her son Francis, and he seems to have been 
engaged in the active business of a publisher 
for a short time only. A comparison of the 
little book under review shows that the 
editions published by Isaiah Thomas at 
Worcester, Massachusetts, were almost exact 
facsimiles of the London issues. The pagina- 
tion is exactly the same, and the arrangement 
of the matter very nearly so. Variations 
in italic type and in capital letters con- 
stitute the only differences. In these small 
matters, the conservatism of English children 
seems to have extended to their cousins across 
the water, and the English nursery song, like 
the English nursery game, forms part of the 
eternal heritage of the two kindred races. A 
facsimile reproduction of the earliest known 


collection of the rhymes sung by English 
children in the eighteenth century, many of 
which date from a much earlier period, and 
are really tags of ballads in popular vogue, 
will therefore, it is hoped, possess some 
features of interest in the eyes of literary 

W. F. P. 



O It, 

Sonnets for the Cradle. 


PART I. Contains the moft celebrated 
Songs and Lullabies of the old Britifh 
Nurics, calculated to amufe Children 
and to excite them to Sleep. 

PART II. Thofe of that fivcet Songftet 
ami Nurfeof Wit and H amour, "Mafter 
William Shakelpeare. 


And llluftrated with NOTES and MAXIM?, 
HiHorical, PhiloJbphical and Criiical. 


Printed for FRANCIS POWER, (Gvandfbn to 
the late Mr. J. NKWBERY,) and Co. 
Ho. 65. St. Paul's Church Yard, 1791. 
3 Price Three Pence. ] 


By a very GREAT WRITER of very 

MUCH might be faid in favour 
of this colle&ion, but as we 
have no room for critical difquifitions 
we (hall only obferve to our readers, 
that the cuftom of fingingthefe fongs 
and lullabies to children is of great 
antiquity : It is even as old as the time 
of tne ancient "Druids. Carafiacusi 
King of the Britons, was rocked in 
his cradle in the ifle of Mona^ now 
called Anglefea y and tuned to fleepby 
fome of thefe foporiferous fonnets. 
As the be# things, however, may be 
made an ill uie of, fo this kind of 
compofition has been employed in a 
fatiricai manner; of which we have 
a remarkable rnflance fo far back as 
the reign of Icing Henry the fifth. 
When that great prince turned his 
A 3 arms 


rms again ft France, he compofed tlio 
following march to lead his troops to 
battle, well knowing that mufick haA 
often the power of infpiring courage, 
especially in the mini of good men. 

Of this his enemies took advantage, 


and, as our happy nation, even at that 
time, was- never without a faction, 
fomc of the malecontents adopted the 
following words to the king's own 
march, in order to ridicule his ma- 
jefty, and to fliew the folly and ioa- 
poflibility of his undertaking. 

There was an old woman tofs'd in a 

Seventeen times as high as the moon ; 

But where fhe was going no mortal 
could tell, 

For under her arm flic carried a broom. 

Old woman, old woman, old wo- 
man, faid I ? 

Whither, ah whither, ah whither 

fo high ? 

To fwecp we cobwebs from tktjtyi 
And Fll le 'with you fy and by* 

Here the king is re^refented a ? an 

old woman, engaged in a purfuit the 

moil abfurd and extravagant imagin- 

A 4 able; 

viii PREFACE. 

able; but when he had routed the 
whole French army at the battle of 
Agincourt) taking their king and the 
flower of their nobility prifoners, and 
with ten thoufand men only made 
himfelf mailer of their kingdom ; the 
very men who had ridiculed him be- 
fore began to think nothing was too 
arduous for him to furmount, they 
therefore cancelled the former fonnet, 
which they were now amamed of, and 
fubftituted this in its Head, which you 
will pleafe to obferve goes to the lame 

So vaft is the prowefs of Harry the 

He'll pluck a hair from the pale-fac'cl 

moon ; 

Or a lion familiarly take by the tooth, 
And lead him about as you lead a 




All princes and potentates imder the 

Through fear into corners and holes 

away run; 
While nor dangers nor dread his (Vrift 

progrefs retards, 
For he deals about kingdoms as we 

do our cards* 

When this was fhewn to his majef- 
ty he fmilingly faid, that folly always 
dealt in extravagancies, and that 
knaves fometimes put on the garb of 
fools to promote in that difguife their 
own wicked deiigns. " The flattery 
** in the laft (fays he) is more in- 
'* fulting than the impudence of the 
* firft, and to weak minds might do 
'* more mifchief; but we have the 
** old proverb in our favour : Iftwe 
** do not ' Jlatter ourfehes, tfe Jiattery of 
( others will never fart**?' 



We cannot conclude xvithout ob- 
ferving, the great j>robahility there 
is that the cuftom of making Nonfenfe 
Fcrfes in our fchools was borrowed 
from this practice among the old Bri 
tljb nurfes ; they have, indeed, been 
alwaysthe firft preceptors of the youth 
of this kingdom, and from them the 
rudiments of taite and learning are 
naturally derived. ^ Let none there- 
fore fpeak irreverently of this antient 
maternity, as they may be confidered 
as the great grandmothers of fciencc 
and knowledge. 


Mother GOOSEV Melody. 


THERE was a little Man, 
Who wooed a little Maid? 
And he faid, little Maid, will you 

wed, wed, wed ? 
I have little more to fay, 
So will you aye or nay, 
For the lead faid is foonefc mended, 
ded, ded. 

II. Then 

*a Mat* GOOSE'* 


Then replied the little maid, 

Little Sir, you've little faid 

To induce a little maid for to wed, 

wed, wed; 

You muft fay a little more, 
And produce a little ore, 
E're I make a little print in your bed, 

bed, bed. 


Then the little man replied, 
If you'll be my little bride, 
I'll raife my love notes a little higher, 

higher, higher; 
Tho* m.y offers are not meet, 
Yet my little heart is great, 
\VIth the little god of love all on 

fire, fire, fire. 


Then the little maid replied, 
Should I be your little bride, 


Ktkr GO O S E V AfM. 13 

Pray what rauft ive have for to ear, 

eat, eat? 

Will the flame that you're To rich ia 
Light a fire in the kitchen, 
Or the little god of lo\e turn the 
fpit, fpit, fpit ? 


Then the little man he gh'd, 
And, fomefav, a little cry'd, 
For his little heart was big with for- 

row, borrow, forrow; 
As I'm your little flave, 
If the little that I have 
Be too little, little, we will borrow, 

borrow, borrow** 

* He who borrows is another man's 
(lave, and pawns his honour, his li- 
berty, and fometimes his nofe for 
the payment. Learn to live on a 
little and be independent. 

Pefcb on Prudence. 
VI. Then 

14 Mother GOOSES Melofy 


Then the little man fo gent, 
Made the little maid relent. 
And fet her little heart a think km, 

kin, kin. 

Tlio' his offers were but fmall, 
She took his little all, 
She could have but the cat and her 

Ikin, Ikia, ikui. 


Jfa&r GOOSB 


LITTLE Betty Winkle fhe had a 

It was a little pig not very big; 
When he was alive heliv'd in clover. 
But now he's dead aad that's all overs 
Johnny Winckle he 
Sat down and cry'd, 
Betty WhicklefaQ 
Laid down aad dy'd; 

16 Motber GOOSE's Mslofy 

So there was aa end of one two, 

and three, 
Jobmy Windle he, 
Betty fFindle (lie, 
And Piggy Wiggle. 

A dirga is a fong made for the 
dead ; tut whether this was made for 
Betty Wtnckle or her pig, is uncertain ; 
no notice being taken of it by Cam" 
<&*, or any of the famous Antiqua- 

Waffs Syiwm of Senfe. 




Mother GOOSES MM&. 17 


And dance upon Difli 

*TMlIPtipon Trenchers, 


fome Bawm : 
She bid me^read ligfetly, 
And come again quickly, 
For fear the young Men fhould do me 

fome Harm. 
Yet didn't you fee, 
Yet didn't you fee, 
What naughty Tricks they put upon 
1 *J B They 

i8 Matter GOOSED 

They broke my Pitcher, 

And fpilt the Water, 

And hufft my Mother, 

And chid her Daughter, 

And kifs'd my Sifter inftead of me. 

What a fucceflion of misfortunes 
befell this poor girl ? But the laft 
circumftance was the mofl afFedling, 
and might have proved fatal. 

Winflwf* View of Bath. 


GOOSES Mekfy. 19 

, draw the latch, 
Set by the fire and fpin j 
Take a cup and drink it up, 

Then call your neighbours in, 

A common cafe this, to call in our 
neighbours to rejoice when all the 
good liquor is gone. 


20 Mother GOOSE'* 


T WONT be my father's JacV, 
JL I won't be my father's Gill, 
I will be thefidler's wife, 
And have mufic wkenl will. 

T'other little tune* 

T'other little tune, 

Prithee, Love, playme f 

T'other little tune. 

Thofe arts are the mod 
Valuable which are of the greateft u(b. 

Motlet GOOSE'* 

THREE wife men ofGoiJjam, 
They went to fea in a bowlj 
And if the bowl had been ilronger^ 
My fong had been longer. 

It is long enough* Never lament 
the lofs of what is not worth having- 


22 Mother GOOSE** Melody. 

"^HERE was an old man, 

And he had a calf, 

And that's half; 
He took him out of the ftall, 
And put him on the wall, 

And that's all. 

Maxiut. Thofe who are given to 
tell all they know, generally tell more 
than they know. 


Mother OOOSE's Mek&y 23 

rnr^HERE was an old woman 
i Liv'd under a hill, 
She put a moufe in a bag", 
The miller did fwear 
Bythe point of his knife, 
He never took toll 
Of a moufe in his life 

The only inftanre of a miller re- 

fujtn^ tall, and for whick the cat 

lias juft caufe of complaint againft 

him. Coke upon Littleton. 


4 Mather GOOSES Meloity. 

rpHERE was an old womaa 
JL Liv'd under a hill, 
And if (lie isn't gone 
She lives there ItilL 

Thi^ is a feli-evldent prapofition, 
\vhidi is the very eflence of truth. 
She lived unto the bill, andlfjbtn not 
gojte/he Jives litre JlilL No-body will 
prefume to conttadia: this. 


Mother GOOSES Melocly, 


DING dong bell. 
The cat is in the well* 
Who put her in? 
Little Johnny Greet?* 
What a naughty boy was that, 
To drown poor Puny cat. 
Who never did any harm, 
And kilPd the mice in his father's 

Maxim. He that injures one 
threatens an humfccdt 



jLj Sings for his iupper ; 
White bread and butter : 
How will he cut it, 
Without e'er alcnife > 
How will he be married, 
Without e'er a wife ? 

To be married without a wife is a 
terrible thing-, and to be married 
xrith a bad wife is fomething wor f e ; 
however, a good wife that fings well 
is the befl mufical inih'Ument in the 

Mother GfOOSE'j Melofy. 27 

SEfaw, Margery Daw, 
Jacky iliall have a new mailer; 
Jacty muft have but a penny a day, 
Becaufe lie caawoikno fatter. 

It is a mean and fcandalous prac- 
tice in authors to put notes to things 
that deferve no notice. 



2 8 Mother GOOSE** Mekfy. 

GREAT A, little a, 
Bouncing B j 

The cat's in the cupboard, 
Arid ilie cau't fee. 

Tes, fhe can . fee that you are 
naughty, and don't jnind your book, 


Mother GOOSES Melody* 

SE faw, facaradown, 
Which is the way to 

town ? 

One foot up, the other foot down, 
That is the way to London town. 

Or to any other town upon the 
face of the earth. Wktfi/e.* 


SHOE tlie colt, 
Shoe the colti 
Shoe the wild mare ; 
Here a nail, 
There a nail, 
Yst Ihe goes bare. 

Ay, ay; drive the nail that will 
go: that's the way of the world, 
and is ^ the method pmrfued by all our 
financiers, politicians, and necro- 


Mother G O O S E V Melafy. 31 

IS %Tm Smith within ? 
Yes, that he is. 
Can he fet a fhoe ? 
Aye, marry two. 
Here a nail and there a nail, 
Tick, tack, too. 

Maxim. Knowledge is a trea- 
fure, but practice is the key to it. 


Moth GO O S E 's Melofy, 

HIGHdiHdfe diddle, 
The cat and the fiddle, 
The cow jump'd over the moon ; 
The little dog laughed 4 
To fee fueh craft, 
And the difli ran away with the 

It nmftjje a little dog that laug-hM, 
for a greajt dog would be afliamed to 
feagh at fuch nonfenfe, 


Mother G O O S EV Mehfy. 33 

RIDE acockhorfe 
To BanJwy crofc, 
To fee what Tommy canlray 3 
A penny whhe loaf, 
A penny white cake,. 
And a two-penny appfe-pye. 

There's a good boy, ear up vour 
pye and hold your tongue 5 for fueace 
is the figaof wifdom. 


COCK a doodle doo, 
My dame has loft her fhoe ; 
My matter lias loft his fiddle ftick, 
And knows not what to do. 

The cock crows us up early in 
tbemoming, that wemay worlc foroiir 
bread, and not live upon charity or 
upon truft: for be *ul>o lives upon 
charity Jhall le often affronted* and he 
that I&es ufan truft jlwtt fay double* 


Mother G O O S E's MeloJy. 3$ 

THERE was an old man 
In a velvet coat, 
He klfs'd a maid 
And gave her a groat; 
The groat it was crack'd, 
And would not go, 
Ah, oldmanj doyouferveraefo? 

If die coat be ever fo fine that a 
fool wears, it is ilili but a fool's cost 


36 Mo&er G OOSE'j Melofy. 

ROUND about, roundabout, 
Magotty pye ; 
My Father loves good ale, 
And fo do 1* 


Evil company makes the good 
lad, and the bad woifc. 

GO O S EV Melody. 37 

Y^CATand Gill 
J Went up the hill, 

To fetch a pail of water j 
Jack fell down 
And broke his crown, 

And Gill came tumbling after. 

The more 
better you will live 


3$ Mother G O O S E'* Melofy. 


THERE were two birds fat on a 

Fa, la, la, la, lal, de; 
One flew away, and then there was one. 

Fa, la, la, la, lal, de; 
The other flew after, 
And then there was none, 

Fa, la, la, 1% lal, dej 
And fo the poor Hone 
Was left all alone, 

jFa, la, la, la, lal, de; 

"This may ferve as a chapter of 
conference in the next new book of 
logic. Sawmill's Reports 

Motler GOOSE's Mfojr. 39 

On the tree top, 
n the wind blows 
The cradle will rock ; 
When the bough breaks 

The cradle will fall, 
Down tumbles baby, 
Cradle and all. 

This may ferve as a warning to 
the proud and ambitious, who climb 
fo high that fchey generally fall at laft* 


Content turns all it touches into 


40 Mother G O S E'J 

LITTLE Jack Homer 
Sat in a corner, 
Eating QiCbriftmas pye$ 
He put in his thumb, 
And pull'd out a plumb, 
And what a good boy was L 
Jack was a boy of excellent tafte, 
as mould appear by his pulling out a 
plumb ; it is therefore iuppofed that 
his father apprenticed him to a 
mince j)ye-makcr, that he might im- 
prove his tafte from year to year; 
no one Handing in to much need of 
good tafte as a paftry cook. 
JScntley o& the Sublime and Beautiful* 

'Mother GOOSES Meloty. 41 

PE AS E-por ridge hot 
Peafe-porridge cold, 
Peafe-porridge in the pot 

Nine days old, 

Spell me that in four letters; 

I will, THAT- 

The poor are fcldomer fick for s 
want of food, than the rich are "by 
the excefs of it. 


Mother GO O S E'.f 

WHO comes here ? 
A grenadier. 
What do you want ? 

A pot of beer. 
Where is your money ? 

I've forgot. 
Get you gone 


Intemperance is attended with dif* 
cafes, andidlenefs with poverty. 


Motlcr GOOSE'j Mclafy. 43 

JACK Sprat 
Could eat no fat, 
His wife could eat no lean; 
And fo betwixt them both, 
They lick'd the platter clean* 


Better to go to bed fupperlefs, than 
rife in debt. 


WHAT care I how black I be, 
Twenty pounds will marry 

If twenty won't, forty fliall, 
1 am my mother's bouncing girl, 

If we do not flatter ourfelves, the 
flattery of others would have no effect. 


Mother GOOSES Melody. 45 

TELL tale tit, 
Your tongue fliall be flit, 
And all the dogs in our town 
Shall have a bit. 


Point not at the faults of others 
with a foul finger. 


ONE, two, three, 
Four and five, 
1 caught a hare alive; 
Six, feven, eight, 
Nine and ten, 
I let him go again. 


We may be as good as we pleafe, 
if we pleafe to be good. 


Mabcr G O O S E's Mclofy 47 


THREE children Hiding on the ice 
Upon a fummer's day, 
As it fell out they all fell in, 
The reft they ran away. 


Oh! had thefe children, been at 


Or Hiding* on dry ground, 
Ten thoufand pounds to one penny, 
They had not then been drown'd. 
III. Ye 

48 Motlxr GOOSE'; 


Ye parents who have children dear. 
And eke ye that have none, 

If you would keep them fafe abroad, 
Pray keep them fafe at home. 

There is fomething ib melancholy 
in this ibng, that it has occafioned 
many people to make water. It is 
almoft as diuretic as the tune which 
John the coachman whittles to his 


Mother GOOSES MeloHy. 49 

PATTY cake, patty cake, 
Bakers man ; 
That I will matter, 
As fad as I can; 
Prick it, and p^rick it, 
And mark it with a T, 
And there will be enough 
Por Jacty and me. 

The fureft way to gain our enjfo is 
to moderate our delires, 


50 Mother G O O S E > 

WHEN I was a little boy 
I had but little wit, 
'Tis a long time ago, 

And I have no more yet $ 
s Nor ever, ever (hall, 

Until that I die. 
For the longer I live, 
The more fool am ! 


He that will be his own mafter, 
las often a fool for his fcholar. 


Motler GOOSE 9 s Meloft. 


WHEN I was a little lx>y 
I liv'd by myfelf, 
And all the bread 
And cheefe I got 

I laid upon the flielf; 
The rats and the mice 

They made fuch aftrife, 
That I was forc'd to go to town 
And buy me a wife. 


The ftreets were fo broad, 
The lanes were fo narrow, 

D 2 I was 

52 Mother G O O SE 's Melody. 

I was forc'd to bring my wife home 

In a wheel-barrow ; 
The wheel-barrow broke, 

And my wife had a fall, 

Wheel-barrow wife and all* 


Provide againft the worft, and hope 
for the bell. 


Mother GOOSES Melody. 53 

OMy kitten a kitten, 
And oh ! my kitten, my deary, 
Such a fweet pap as this 
There is not far nor neary ; 
There we go up, up, up, 
Here we go down, down, down, 
Here we go backwards and forwards, 
And here we go round, round, round. 


Idtenefs hath no advocate, but 
many friends. 


THIS pig went to market, 
That pig ftaid at home ; 
This pig had roaft meat, 
That pig had none ; 
This pig went to the barn-door, 
And cvy'd week, week, for more. 


If we do not govern our paffions 
our palTions will govern us. 


Mother GOOSES McJofy. 55 


THERE was a man of The/fitly, 
And he was wondrous wife, 
He jump'd into a quick -fet, hedge, 
And Icratch'd out both his eyes : 
And when he faw his eyes were ouf, 

With all his might and main, 

He jump'd into another hedge, 

And fcratch'd them in again. 

D4 How 

56 Mothr GOOSE 1 , 

How happy it was for the man to 
fcratch his eyes in again, when they 
'were fcratch'd out! But he was a 
blockhead or he would have kept 
Tiimfelf out of the hedge, and not 
been fcratch'd at all. 

fs new Way to Wifdom. 

A Long 

Jfitfcr GOO9EV Jffih*. 

A Long tail'd pig, of a fliorc 
tail'd pig, 

Or a pig without any tailj 
A ibw pig, or a boar pig, 
Or a pig with a curling tail* 

Take hold of the tail and eat off his 

And then you'll be fure the pig-hog 

is dead. 


JMtofrr GOOSE'/ MetoJy. 


BOW, wow, wow, 
Whofe dog art thou I 
Little Tom Tinker's dog, 
Bow, wow, wow, 

Tarn Tinker** dog is a very good 
dog, and an honefter dog than his 


Mother GOOSES 

BAH, bah, black Iheep, 
Have you any wool ? 
Yes, marry have I, 
Three bags full; 
One for my matter, 

One for my dame, 
But none for the little boy 
Who cries in the lane. 

Bad habits are eafier conquered to 
day than to-morrow* 


Were two pretty men, 

They lay in bed 

'Till the clock ftruck ten : 
Then up ftarts Robin. 

And looks at the iky, 
Oh! brother Richard^ 

The fun's very high j 
You go before 

With thebottle and ba^, 
And I will come after 

Oa little Jack nag- 



What lazy rogues were thefe to lie 
irt bed fo long, I dare fay they have 
no cloaths to their backs; for Jazi- 
neft cloaths a. matt with rag** 


THERE was an old woman, 
And flie fold puddings and pies* 
She went to the mill 

And the daft flew into her eyes : 
Hot pies, 

And cold pies to fell, 
Wherever flie goes 

You may follow her by the fmell. 


Either fay nothing of the abfenf, 
or fpcak like a friend. 


Motler GOOSES MMj. 63 

THERE were twp blackbirds 
Sat upon a hill, 
The one was nairiM Jack* 

The other nam'd GMt ^ 

Tty away Jack, 

Fly away Gift* 
Come again y^ck^ 
Come again GllL 


A bird In the hand is worth two In 


THE fow came in with a faddle, 
Thelittlepig rock'd the cradle, 
The difti jiunp'd a top of the table, 
To fee the pot vvafli the ladle ; 
The fpit that flood behind the door 
Call'd the difhclout dirty whore; 
Ods-plut, fays the gridiron, 

Can't ye agree, 
l*m the head conflable, 
Bring *em to me. 

Note* If he a&s as conjdable in this 
cafe, the cook mult furely l>e the 
juftice of peace* 


Mather G O O S E's Mel*fy 65 

BOYS and girls come out to play* 
The mooa does ihine as bright 

as dayj 
Come with a hoop, and come with a 


Come with a good will or not at all. 
Loofe your fuppeij and loofe your 

Come to your playfellows kl tlte 


Up the ladder and down the wall 
A halfpenny loaf will ferve us all. 


66 Mother GOOSE'* Mekfy. 

But when the loaf is gone, what will 

you do ? 
Thofewho would eat muft work. 

All -work and ixo jplay makes 
a dull boy, 


. 6? 

WE'RE three brethren out of 

Come to court your daughter Jane: 
My daughter yane flie is too young, 
She has no Jkillin a flattering tongue. 
Be fhe young, or be flie old, 
Its for her gold ihe muft be ibid j 
So fare you well my lady gay* 
We muft return another day. 


Riches ferve a wife man, and go- 
vern a fool. 

E 2 

8 Jtthr GOOSSV JK*$i 

A Logical SONG; or tie CONJU- 
ROR'S Reafonfor not getting Money. 

I Would, il I cou'd, 
If I cou'dn't, how cou'd I ? 
I cou'dix't, without I cou'd, cou'd I ? 
Cou'd you, without you cou'd, cou'd 


Cou'd ye, Cou'd ye? 
Cou'd you, without you cou'd; cou'd 


G S E's MeloJy. 69 


This is anew way of handling an 
old argument, faid to be invented by 
a famous fenator; but it has f^ae- 
thing in. it of Gothic conftrudtion. 



ERE'sA, B, andC, 
D, E, E, and G, 
I, K, L, M, N, O. P, Q, 

, S, T, and U, 
X, Y, and Z. 

And here's the child's dad, 
Who is fagacious and difcernin^j 
And knows this is the fount of Jeau> 

ittv O0O8BV Kfc, 71 

This is the moft learned ditty ia 
the world: for indeed there is no 
fong can be made without the aid of 
this, it being \h&gajmtt and ground- 
work of them all. 

Mope's Geography of the Mind. 


72 Mailer GOOSES IZdcfy. 


PIPING .hot, fmoaYmgliot, 
What Pve got, 
You have nor, 

Hot grey peafe, "hot, hot, hot; 
Hot grey peafe hot. 

There is more mufic in this fong, 
on a cold froity night, than ever the 
Syrens were poffeiied of, who capti- 
vated Ulyffc3\ and the effe&s itick 
clofer to the ribs. 

Hvggkjordon. Hunger. 

Metier GOOSES MsloJj. 73 

DICKEllY, dickery, dock, 
The moufe ran up the clock; 
The clock (truck one, 
The moufe ran down, 
Dickery, dickery dock. 

Time flays for no man, 



P A R T II. 


LULLABIES of Skakefieare. 

76 Mother G O S E 's MeloiTy. 

WHERE the bee fucks, there 
fuck I, 

In a cowllip's bell I lie : 
There I couch, when owls do cry, 
On the bat's back I do fly, 
After fummer, merrily. 
Merrily, merrily fhall I live now, 
Under the bloflbm that hangs on the 


Mother GOOSES MAofy 77 

YOU fpottcd fnakes, with dou- 
ble tongue \ 

Thorny hedge hogs be not feen ; 
Newts and blind-worms, do no 


Come not near our fairy queen* 
Philomel, with melody, 
Sing in your fweet lullaby ; 
Lulla, lulla, lulla, lullaby; lulla, 

lulla, lullaby. 

Never harm, nor fpell, nor charm, 
Come our lovely lady nigh ; 
So good night, with lullaby. 


?S Mother GOOSE'* 

TAKE, oh ! take tliofe lips away, 
That fofweetly were for-fworn ; 
And thofe eyes, the break of day, 

Lights that do miflead the morn : 
But my kifles bring again, 
Seals of love ? but feal'd in vain. 


Mbtkr GOOSES Wo$. 79 


WHEN daifespied, and violets 

And lady-finocks all iilver-white 5 
And cuckow-buds of yellow hue. 
Do paint the meadows with delight : 
The cuckow then on every tree, 
Mocks married men, for thus lings he ; 
Cuckow ! 

Cuckow! cuckow! O word of fear, 
Unpleafing to a married ear ! 
When fhepherds pipe on oaten llraws. 
And merry larks are plough-men's 

clocks : 
When turtles tread, and rooks and 

And maiden's bleach their fummer 

fmocks ; 

The cuckow then on every tree, 
Mocks married men, for thus lings he 5 
Cuckow ! 

Cuckow ! cuckow ! O word o fear, 
Unpleafing to a married ear. 

8o Wtbtr GOOSES 


WHEN icicles hang on the wall, 
And Dick the fhepherd blows 

his nail ; 

And Tom hears logs into the hall, 
And milk comes frozen home in 


When blood is nipt, and ways be foul, 
Then nightly fings the Hanng owl, 
Tu-whit! to-whoOj 
A merry note, 
While greafy Joan doth keel the 


When all around the wind doth blow, 
And coughing drowns the parfon's 


And birds fit brooding in the fnow, 
And Marian* nofe looks red and 
* raw; 


When roa&ed crabs hifs in the bowl, 
Then nightly fings the flaring owl, 
Tu-whit! To-whoo! 

A merry note, 

While greafy Joan doth keel the 


8a Motlxr GOOSES 

TELL me where is fancy bred, 
Or in the heart or in the head ? 
How begot, how nourifhed ? 
Reply, reply. 

It is engendered in the eyes, 
With gazing fed, and fancy die 
In the cradle where it lies ; 
Let us all ring fancy's kaell f 
Ding, done, bell; 
Ding, dons, bell. 


T TNDER the greenwood tree, 
VJ Who loves to lie with .me, 
And tune his merry note, 
Unto the fweet bird*s throat: 
Come hither, come hither, come 


Here ihali he fee 
No enemy, 
But winter and rough weather. 


84 Mother GOOSES 

WHO doth ambition ihun, 
And loves to lie i'th'fun, 
Seeking the food he eats, 
And pleas'd with what he gets ; 
Come hither, come hither, come 


No enemy, 
But winter and rough weather* 

If it do come to pafs 

That any man turn afs ; 

Leaving his wealth and cafe, 

A ftubborn will to pleafe, 

Due ad me, due ad me, due ad me; 


Grofs fools, 
And if he will come to me. 


Mother GOOSE'sMtbfy B$ 

BLOW, blow, thou winter wind, 
Thou art not fo unkind 
As man's ingratitude : 
Thy tooth is not fo keen, 
Becaufe thou art not feen, 

Although thy breath be rude. 
Heigh ho ! fing, heigh ho ! unto the 

green holty ! 

Moil friendfhip is feigning ; moft lov- 
ing mere folly. 
Then heigh ho, the holly ! 
This life is moft jolly. 

Freeze, freeze, thou bitter Iky, 
That doft not bite fo nigh, 

As benefits forgot : 
Tho* thou the waters warp, 
Thy fHnfif is not fofliarp 

As friend remember'd not. 
Heigh ho! fing, &c. 


86 Motto GOOSE'/ 

OMiftrefs mine, where are you 
running ? 
O flay and hear your true love's 


That can fing both high and low* 
Trip no further, pretty fweeting, 
Journey's end in lover's meeting, 

Every wife man's fon doth know. 
What is love ? 'tis not hereafter; 
Prefent mirth has prefent laughter. 
What's to come, is ftill uniure : 
In decay there lies no plenty; 
Then coqiekifs me, fweet and twenty, 
Youth's a fluff will not endure. 


Metier GOOSE'/ MeJofy 87 

f T THAT /hall lie have that MUM 

yV the deer? 
His leather fkin and horns to wear ; 
Then Jing him home: take thou no 

To wear the horn, the horn, the^ 


It was a crdt ere thou waft born* 
Thy father's father wore it, 
And thy father bore it. 
The horn, the horn, the lufty horn, 
Is not a thing to laugh to fcorn. 


88 Mother GOOSE'; MdoJy. 

WHEN daffodils begin tb 
With, heigh ! the doxy Over 
the dale; 
Why then come in the fwect o'th j 

'Fore the red blood ralns-in the 

winter pale, 
The white Iheet bleaching on the 

With heigh thefweet bird*, O how 


Doth fet my progging edge : 
For a quart of ale is a difli for a 


The lark that tirra-ly ni chants, 
With, hey! with hey! the thrufh 

and the jay : 
Are fummer fongs for me and my 

WhEe we lay tumblingin the hajTt 


Metier GOOSJL's Msufy. 89 

TOG on, jog on, the foot path way, 
J And memly hcnt the Ayle-aj 
A merry heart goes all the day, 
Your fad tires in amile-a. 


90 Mttfar GOOSSS 

ORPHEUS with his lute made 
And the mountain tops that freeze, 

Bow themfelves when he did ling ; 
To his mufic, plants and flowers 
Everrofe, as fun and fhowers 
There had made a lafting fpring* 

Ev'ry thing that heard him play, 
Ev'n the billows of the fea, 

Hung their heads, and then lay by* 
2n fweet mufic is fuch art, 
Killing care, and grief of heart) 

fall aileep or hearing die* 


GOOSE's MelcJy. 92 

HARK, hark! the lark at hea- 
ven's gate fings, 
And Phcetus 'gins arife, 
His fteeds to water at thofefprings 

On chalic'd flowers that lies, 
And winking may-buds begia 

To ope their golden eyes, 
With every thing that pretty bin 
My lady fvveet arife: 
Arife, arife. 


92 Matter GQOSE's 

THE poor foul fat finging by a 
Her hand on her bofom, her head on 

her knee, 
The frefh flr-eams ran by her, and 

murmur'd her moans, 
Her foft tears fell from her, and 

foften'd the Hones ; 
Sing all a green willow muft be my 

Let nobody blame him, his fcorn I 

I call'd my love falfe love, but what 

faid he then ? 
If I court more women you'll think 

of more men* 



PREFACE, p. vii. There was an old 'woman toss' din 
a blanket, etc. 

Mr. Chappell, in his Popular Music of the Olden 
Time, ii. 571, points out that this nursery rhyme 
was sung to the air of Lilliburlero. In Mustek's 
Handmaid^ 1673, according to Halliwell, p. 244, 
the tune is called Lilliburlero, or Old Woman, 
whither so high. This air was in vogue so late 
as 1886. Mr. Frederick E. Sawyer, F.S.A., of 
Brighton, wrote in Notes and Queries, 7th Ser. 
i. 153, that the following song was sung at harvest 
suppers in Sussex to the tune of Lilliburlero : 

* There was an old woman drawn up in a basket 

Three or four times as high as the moon, 
And where she was going I never did ask it, 

But in her hand she carried a broom. 
A broom ! a broom ! a broom ! a broom ! 

That grows on yonder hill, 
And blows with a yellow blossom, 

Just like a lemon peel, 
Just like a lemon peel, my boys, 

To mix with our English beer, 
And you shall drink it all up, 

While we do say, Goliere ! 


Goliere ! Goliere ! Goliere ! Goliere ! 

While we do say, Goliere ! 
And you shall drink it all up, 

While we do say, Goliere !' 

This refrain reminds us of the old Goliardic 
songs, which were not unknown in England, 
though they were more common in Germany. Of 
the * old woman ' rhyme there are several variants. 
According to the version given in Infant Institutes, 
1797, p. 15, she was tossed 'nineteen times as high 
as the moon ' ; Ritson, in his Gammer Carton's 
Garland, 18 10, p. 8, adheres to what seems to be the 
original number, ' seventeen,' as given in Mother 
Gooseys Melody, which it may be noted tallies with 
that quoted by Goldsmith. 1 Halliwell, p. 89, goes 
as high as ' nineteen-nine times.' All the older 
versions agree in stating that a blanket was the 
medium of the tossing ; later readings have altered 
this into basket. 

A great writer of more modern days was not 
unfamiliar with the rhyme : 

* Little old vuoman, and ivhither so high ? 
To sweep the cobwebs out of the sky.' 

Dickens, Bleak House, chap. viu. 

1 See Introduction, p. xi. 


P. 1 1 . 'There was a little man, nuho '-wooed a little 
maid, etc. 

Another version of this song, which is given in 
full by Halliwell, p. 224, was printed at the Straw- 
berry Hill Press in broadside form. It is also 
printed under the heading of * A New Love Song, 
By the Poets of Great Britain, 1 in another very 
scarce children's book, called The Fairing, or. Golden 
Toy, which was issued by John Newbery about 
1760, and Mr. Chappell, in his Popular Music of 
the Olden Time, ii. 770, says that many half-sheets 
of it with the music were printed during the 
eighteenth century. It was sung to an old tune, 
called, / am the Duke of Norfolk ; or, Pants Steeple, 
which is given in Playford's Dancing Master, 
Division Violin, 1685, pp. 2, 18 (Chappell, i. 117). 
The song of 'The Duke of Norfolk will be found in 
The Suffolk Garland, 1818, p. 402. It was sung at 
harvest suppers, when one of the guests was crowned 
with an inverted pillow, and a jug of ale was 
presented to him by another of the company, kneel- 
ing, to the following words : 

' I am the Duke of Norfolk, 

Newly come to Suffolk ; 
Say, shall I be attended, 

Or, no, no, no ! 


Good Duke, be not offended, 
And you shall be attended, 

You shall be attended, 
Now, now, now ! ' 

The Irish tune of The Cruiskeen Lawn is a 
modification of the air. 

P. 25. Ding dong Bell, The Cat is in the Well, etc. 

A variant of this rhyme is given in Halliwell, 
p. 98. That writer points out, p. 245, that ' Ding 
dong Bell ' is the burden of a song in The Tempest, 
i. 2, and of another in The Merchant of Venice, 
iii. 2. 

P. 3 2 . High diddle, diddle, The Cat and the Fiddle, 

This rhyme may possibly be alluded to in an 
old blackletter play called A Lamentable tragedy 
mixed ful of pleasant mirth, conteyning the life of 
Cambises King of Percia, written by Thomas Pres- 
ton, and printed by John Allde about the year 
1570. It has been reprinted in Hazlitt's edition of 
Dodsley's Old Plays. On sig. E iv recto (Hazlitt, 
pp. 235-6) the following dialogue occurs: 

* King. 

Me think, mine eares dooth wish the sound of musics 
harmony 5 


Haer for to play before my grace, in place I would them 

Play at the banquet. 


They be at hand Sir with stick and fidle 5 
They can play a new daunce called hey-didle-didle.' 

A variant of the rhyme is given in Miss Jackson's 
Shropshire Word-Book, p. 323. 

P. 34. Cock a doodle doo, My Dame has lost her 
Shoe, etc. 

Halliwell, p. 99, has extended this rhyme into 
four stanzas, all of which, but the first, are pro- 
bably modern. 

P. 36. Round about, round about, Magotty Pye, etc. 

Halliwell, p. 104, points out that ' maggot-pie is 
the original name of the chattering and ominous 
bird,' and refers to Macbeth, iii. 4, where this word 
is used : 

' Augurs, and understood relations, have 
By magot-pies, and choughs, and rooks, brought forth 
The secret'st man of blood.' 

P. 37. Jack and Gill Went up the Hill, etc. 
Ritson, in Gammer Gurtons Garland, 1810, 
p. 20, reads ' a bottle of water.' 


P. 39. Hush a by Baby On the Tree Top, etc, 
Ritson, in Gammer Gurtons Garland, 18 10, p. 13, 
gives a slightly different version : 

' Bee baw babby lou, on a tree top, 
When the wind blows the cradle will rock, 
When the wind ceases the cradle will fall, 
Down comes baby and cradle and all.' 

He says, rather improbably, that the unintelligible 
words in the first line are a corruption of the 
French nurse's threat in the fable : He has ! la le 
loup ! Hush ! there 's the wolf. 

P. 40. Little Jack Horner Sat in a Corner, etc. 

These lines form a stanza in an old merriment 
entitled, The Pleasant History of Jack Horner. Con- 
taining the witty Tricks and pleasant Pranks he 
played from his Youth to his riper Years j pleasant 
and delightful both for Winter and Summer Recrea- 
tion?- Halliwell, pp. 230-43, has printed the greater 
part of the history from a copy in the Douce col- 
lection in the Bodleian Library. 

P. 47. Three Children sliding on the Ice, etc. 

These stanzas are adapted from a ballad called 
'The Lamentation of a Bad Market ; or, The 

1 This title is taken from a copy in the possession of 
the present writer, with the imprint : London, Printed: 
tAnd sold by J. Drewry, Bookseller in Derby. 


Drownding of Three Children in the Thames,' 
which seems to have been first published in The 
Lo'ves of Hero and Leander j A Mock Poem : With 
Marginall Notes, and other choice Pieces of Drollery, 
of which the first edition was published in 1651. 
The ballad was reprinted from the second edition 
of 1653 by Dr. Rimbault in A Little Book of Songs 
and Ballads, 1851, p. 187, and with some varia- 
tions by Halliwell, p. 28, from the later edition of 
1662. It was also printed by Mr. Thomson in 
his Chronicles of London Bridge, 1827, p. 410. It 
was sung to the tune of Chewy Chase (Chappell, 
i. 199). 

P. 5 1 . When Invas a little Boy, Ili^d by myself, etc. 

A slightly different version is given by Ritson 
in Gammer Gurtons Garland, p. 26, beginning: 

* When I was a batchelor, I lived by myself.' 
This version is followed by Halliwell, p. 22. 

P. 53. O my Kitten a Kitten, etc. 

A few variants are given in the version printed 
by Halliwell, p. 127. 

P. 55. There e was a Man o/'Thessaly, etc. 

The variants of this rhyme are numerous. 
Buchan, in his Ancient Ballads of the North, ii. 154, 
has * a man in Nineveh, 1 and Halliwell, p. 21, 'a 
man of Newington.' 


P. 63. The So--w came in <with a Saddle, etc. 
Halliwell, p. 186, reads: 

' The broom behind the butt 
Call'd the dish-clout a nasty slut.' 

P. 64. We > three Brethren out of Spain, etc. 

This was a popular game-rhyme, and Mrs. 
Gomme, in her Traditional Games of England, 
Scotland, and Ireland, ii. 257, 455, gives as many 
as thirty-eight variants. f It has been suggested 
that this game has for its origin an historical event 
in the reign of Edward in., whose daughter Jane 
married a prince of Spain.' The numerous varia- 
tions in the text, which may be seen in Mrs. 
Gomme's exhaustive account of the game, suf- 
ficiently testify to its antiquity. 

P. 66. Boys and Girls come out to play, etc. 

A variant of this rhyme is given by Halliwell, 
p. 143. Mrs. Gomme, in Traditional Games, i. 44, 
quotes an early version from Useful Transactions in 
Philosophy, p. 44 : 

* Boys, boys, come out to play, 
The moon doth shine as bright as day ; 
Come with a whoop, come with a call, 
Come with a goodwill or don't come at all ; 
Lose your supper and lose your sleep, 
So come to your playmates in the street.' 


It was also current in Scotland (Chambers, Popular 
Rhymes, p. 152). The tune will be found in Play- 
ford's Dancing Master, 1728, ii. 138, under the 
title of Girls and Boys, come out to Play, and in 
Gay's ballad opera of Polly, 1729, under that of 
We *<ve cheated the Parson. The words of this last 
song were written by Dryden, and occur in the 
fifth act of his opera, King Arthur, 1691. The 
music, which is said to have been composed by 
Purcell, will be found in Wit and Mirth j or, Pills 
to Purge Melancholy, third ed., 1712, p. 223. 

P. 76. Where the Bee sucks, there suck I, etc. 
The Tempest, v. i. 

P. 77. You spotted Snakes, ivith double Tongue, 
etc. A Midsummer Night's Dream, ii. 2. 

P. 78. Take, oh! take those Lips away, etc. 
Measure for Measure, iv. i. 

This song, with an additional stanza, and two 
slight verbal variations, occurs in Beaumont and 
Fletcher's The Bloody Brother ; or, Rollo, Duke of 
Normandy, v. 2. Mr. Robert Bell points out (Songs 
from the Dramatists, 1855, p. 148) that the origin 
of both verses may be traced to the fragment Ad 
Lydiam, ascribed to Cornelius Gallus. The follow- 
ing are the corresponding passages, which discover 
a resemblance too close to be accidental : 


* Pande, Puella, genas roseas, 

Perfusas rubro purpureae tyriae. 
Porrige labra, labra corallina ; 
Da columbatim mitia basia : 
Sugis amentis partem animi. 

* Sinus expansa profert cinnama ; 

Undique surgunt ex te deliciae. 
Conde papillas, quae me sauciant 
Candore, et luxu nivei pectoris.' 

The following is Fletcher's adaptation of the con- 
cluding lines : 

* Hide, oh, hide those hills of snow, 
Which thy frozen bosom bears, 
On whose tops the pinks that grow 

Are yet of those that April wears ! 
But first set my poor heart free, 
Bound in those icy chains by thee.' 

It seems doubtful if Shakespeare's acquaintance 
with the classics was sufficient to enable him to 
compose the first stanza of the poem. If Fletcher 
wrote both, he may have allowed his friend to 
borrow the lines. On the other hand, in the wit- 
combats that were carried on at the Mermaid, 
Jonson, or some other scholar of the party, may 
have quoted Gallus, and thereby started the idea in 
Shakespeare's mind, to be afterwards pursued by 


Fletcher. The music of this song was composed 
by 'Jack Wilson/ the singer, who belonged to 
the same company of players with Shakespeare, 
and whose name is given in a stage direction in 
Much Ado About Nothing, 4to, 1600. 

P. 79. When Daisies pied, and Violets blue, etc. 
Love's Labour's Lost, v. 2. 

P. 8 1. When Icicles hang on the Wall, etc. 
Love's Labour V Lost, v. 2. 

P. 83. Tell me where is fancy bred, etc. The 
Merchant of Venice, iii. 2. 

P. 84. Under the Greenwood Tree, etc. As You 
Like It, ii. 5. 

P. 86. Blow, blow, thou Winter Wind, etc. As 
You Like It, 11. 7. 

P. 87. O Mistress mine, where are you running? 
O stay you here, your true Lo<ve V coming, 

etc. Twelfth Night, ii. 3. 
The correct text has : 

' O Mistress mine, where are you roaming ? 
O, stay and hear ; your true Love 's coming.' 

The music of this song will be found in Chap- 
pell's Popular Music, i. 209. Mr. Chappell points 


out that it occurs in both editions of Morley's 
Consort Lessons, 1599 and 1611, and also in Queen 
Elizabeth's Virginal Book, arranged by Byrd. As 
it is found in print in 1599, it proves that Twelfth 
Night was either written in or before that year, 
or that, in accordance with a then prevailing 
custom, O Mistress mine was an old song intro- 
duced into the play. 

P. 88. What shall he have that killed the Deer, 
etc. As You Like It, iv. 2. 

P. 89. When Daffodils begin to "pear, etc. The 
Winter's Tale, iv. 3. 

The usual text has peer for 'pear, and pugging 
for progging in 1. 7. 

P. 9 1 . Jog on, jog on, the foot path Way, etc. 
The Winter's Tale, iv. 3. 

Mother Goose erroneously gives mend for hent, 
which means to hold or grasp, in the second line. 
This is probably an old song borrowed by Shake- 
speare for the occasion. Mr. Chappell in his 
Popular Music, i. 211, says that the tune is in The 
Dancing Master from 1650 to 1698, and also in 
Queen Elizabeth's Virginal Book under the name 
of Hanskin. The song, with two additional stanzas, 
is in The Antidote against Melancholy, 1661. The 
following are the added verses : 


* Your paltry money-bags of gold 

What need have we to stare for, 

When little or nothing soon is told, 

And we have the less to care for. 

* Cast care away, let sorrow cease, 

A fig for melancholy ; 
Let 's laugh and sing, or, if you please, 
We '11 frolic with sweet Dolly.' 

P. 92. Orpheus nvith his Lute made Trees, etc. 
King Henry nil, in. i. 

P. 93. Hark, hark! the Lark at Hea^ns Gate 
sings, etc. Cymbeline, ii. 3. 

P. 94. The poor Soul sat singing by a Sycamore 
tree, etc. Othello, iv. 3. 

The song of Oh! c willo--w, willow, which is in- 
troduced by Desdemona in a few affecting lines, 
appears to have been composed in the tragic days 
of Henry vui. The version adapted by this un- 
fortunate lady is contained in a manuscript volume 
of songs preserved in the British Museum (Add. 
MSS. 15, 117), and probably written at the close of 
the sixteenth century or the beginning of the seven- 
teenth. There is a blackletter copy of the song in 
the Pepys collection called ' A Lover's Complaint, 
being forsaken of his love,' which has been printed 


by Percy in his Reltques, Series i. Part ii. A ver- 
sion from the manuscript, which is slightly different 
from that used by Percy, is printed with the tune 
in Chappell's Popular Music, i. 206, where all the 
available information about the song is given. 

* Willow songs ' were favoured by the dramatists, 
and a specimen written by John Heywood, a 
favourite playwright and court musician in the 
time of Henry vni., will be found in a manuscript 
which formerly belonged to Mr. Bright, and the 
contents of which were printed in 1848 by the 
Shakespeare Society under the editorship of Mr. 
Halliwell. There is another in an anonymous 
prose comedy called Sir Gyles Goosecappe, presented 
by the Children of the Chapel, and printed in 

N.B. The references to Halliwell in these notes 
are to his Nursery Rhymes of England, second 
edition, 1843, and in the case of Chappell, to his 
Popular Music of the Olden Time, in two volumes, 
undated, but printed in 1862. 

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